I used to host my blog on Wordpress.com. Over the past decade or more, I always moved by blog around, mainly owing to my engineering finicky, or maybe because I didn’t take it too serious. It was always a place to vent my frustration, or to write random stuff about random things. However, last year, I had decided to settle down with Wordpress.com and decided to write stuff more often and in a structured way. Though I didn’t write much, or write meaninful stuff.

A few months back, I had purposely blocked my credit card to know where all I am being charged from, and Wordpress became a victim of a failed charge. For no reason I visited my domain recently and saw it showing a failure notice by Wordpress.com. Anyway wanting to continue with Wordpress, I went to their subscription page to renew, only to notice their pricing change drastically. Previously, I used to pay around 2k per year or less (I don’t remember), but now their only paid plan is 1.15k per month 🤯. Their free plan doesn’t support custom domains.

Frustrated, I decided to self host my blog again, either with Wordpress or Ghost. I checked Digital Ocean for a self host VM and came across their Apps platform, which allows you to host upto 3 static sites for free, with full custom domain and DNS support. This was interesting. Now I had to choose a static site generator, and for the same, I went to https://jamstack.org/generators to pick one. Hugo was second in list and is one of the best static site generators with great themes for blogs. Digital Ocean Apps platform has auto build for Hugo and allows CI/CD from Github. So all it took me was to have a private Github repo synced to Digital Ocean App platform, and my custom domain https://sreekanth.in pointing to it. Whenever I make a commit to the private repo with a markdown down post file, the Digital Ocean App platform auto builds it with Hugo, and updates the public directory. So why didn’t I think of this option before? There was Jekyll and many other static site generators long back that I knew of, but the effort it took to host the built static pages was painstaking. Either I had to use Github pages, or some other alternative. To say the truth, it wasn’t worth the effort. It still isn’t honestly. I might actually go back to Wordpress paid plan and this might be just another one of my finicky attempts. Anyways, I am totally not OK with the shitty move Wordpress did, whatever the justification maybe.